Here’s a game-changing epiphany I had in the shower a few days ago:
Whenever things aren’t going well, I always ask myself:
How can I do better?
How can I do more, work harder, push myself farther?
While some people thrive under the push, I do not. I am a creature of naps and wood walks, I am a sprite in a world that values the nine to five. Pushing, while I can and have done it, makes my whole system collapse in a pile of harried Why Does It Have To Be This Way?
I'm a bit of a princess, to be honest.
But asking that question has a subtle energetic implication that in order to be worthy, in order to be loved, I need to do more. I need to be better.
Feeling like you need to be better - whether in your own head, in a relationship, or at work - is a goddamn soul killer.
NO MORE SOUL KILLING PLZ.
Instead - and here’s the shampoo-inspired epiphany - I’m starting to ask myself:
“How can I love myself in this place?”
How can I love myself when it looks like I won’t be able to pay rent?
How can I love myself when I’m in the middle of a breakup?
How can I love myself when I’m having trouble getting anything done?
How can I love myself when it takes a buttered trowel to shovel me into my jeans?
How can I love myself when my financial spreadsheets don’t look the way I think they should?
How can I love myself when it feels like everything is collapsing?
For me, the way to love myself in this is to remember that I am worthy and lovable no matter the circumstance.
We are all lovable and worthy, simply because we’re alive. But we’ve been so rigorously trained out of that idea that it requires some rewiring to remember it.
I love myself by being gentle with myself. By loving my legs for how well they work, even when they strain denim. By loving the energy of money and how it’s always taken care of me. By loving the roller coaster ride because it’s always taking me somewhere better even when, in the moment, it feels like somewhere much worse.
By loving myself just goddamn because.
Of course this “How can I love myself?” question has a different answer for everyone.
Just follow what feels best for you in each moment. If an action feels good, take it. If thinking a thought feels good, think it. If something you want requires something you resist, feel into it and ask how you can make it easier on yourself. Ask how it could be fun.
As we learn to be gentler with ourselves, we learn to be gentler and more open in the world. And when we're in the world radiating the love we already feel for ourselves, everything changes.
In the meantime, be good do you. Do it however you’re guided. You know what’s best for you, always.